World / Asia-Pacific

Philippines, US hold naval exercises

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-06-26 13:03

MANILA - Troops from the Philippines and the United States began on Thursday their annual joint naval exercises.

The 20th annual Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training ( CARAT) Philippines 2014 is part of a broader bilateral exercise series the US Navy conducts with nine partner navies in South and Southeast Asia.

The US embassy in Manila said in a statement that CARAT exercises are aimed at addressing shared maritime security priorities, strengthen maritime partnerships and enhance interoperability among participating navies.

This year's CARAT Philippines will focus on combined operations at sea, amphibious landings, diving and salvage, and maritime patrol and reconnaissance flights.

Exercises will be held in several locations ashore and at sea including Subic Bay, San Antonio in the northern Philippine province of Zambales and Sangley Point in Cavite City and Ternate in western Philippines.

As in years past, the sea phase of the exercises will take place in international waters west of Subic Bay.

The Philippines has participated since the series began in 1995. The US embassy said CARAT exercises are "clear examples" of the long-standing and close relationship between the navies of the Philippines and the United States.

The US embassy said CARAT promotes regional maritime cooperation with many participating navies and "is not in response to current events."

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